Pin It
Learn the Dos and Don'ts for wine tastings, then visit Chapel Hill Wine Co., Wine Authorities, Great Grapes, Seaboard Wine and Total Wine

Free wine all around 

It's always worth a reminder that there is free, food-related fun to be had. Nearly every area wine store hosts a wine tasting every weekend, all year long. And they're free.

There's free wine, of course, but also free education. The wine guys/ gals often organize the tasting around a grape, region or food pairing. Sometimes the winemaker or importer is there to answer questions.

Here are some dos and don'ts for free tastings: Do ask questions. Don't be embarrassed. Chances are, the person next to you doesn't know what "grapefruit on the nose" means, either. But, especially if it's crowded, don't monopolize the person leading the tasting. Everyone else is there to learn, too.

Do taste all the wines. Don't pick and choose among what you already know you like. Do try something new; you never know. Don't be afraid to spit out the wine (into the proper container, of course) if you'd prefer to not ingest alcohol. At wine tastings, spitting is perfectly acceptable.

Here are some stores that have regular free wine tastings. Call and verify the events scheduled for the week. Even Web sites can be out of date or don't include events.

The Chapel Hill Wine Co. (2809 Homestead Road, 968-1884) and its partner store, the Hillsborough Wine Co. (118 S. Churton St., 732-4343) host tastings from 1 to 5 p.m. every Saturday. On July 19, the Chapel Hill store will feature both red and white wines of Germany. The Hillsborough store features "surf and turf"—wines to accompany your favorite seafood and steaks.

Wine Authorities (2501 University Drive, Durham, 489-2884, www.wineauthorities.com) holds a free "Try Before You Buy" event from noon to 3 p.m. Saturdays. The owners usually send an e-mail Wednesday (visit the Web site to subscribe) detailing what's pouring on Saturday.

Whet your palate at Great Grapes (1237 Kildaire Farm Road, 468-9088, www.greatgrapesonline.com) from 4 to 7 p.m. every Thursday and noon to 4 p.m. every Saturday. These are the summer hours; beginning shortly after Labor Day, the store will also have a Friday tasting.

Seaboard Wine (802 Semart Drive, Suite 118, Raleigh, 831-0850, www.seaboardwine.com) offers samplings from noon to 4 p.m. every Saturday.

All five Total Wine stores in the Triangle—one each in Cary and Durham, three in Raleigh—host tastings from 4 to 7 p.m. on Fridays and then feature the same wines from noon to 6 p.m. on Saturdays. See www.totalwine.com for addresses, store hours and contact information.

Did I miss any? Please let me know about any other free (or almost free) wine tastings, or any other wine-related events, at food@indyweek.com.

Know about a fun food happening in the Triangle? Send it to Now Serving at food@indyweek.com.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Now Serving

  • A biscuit bonanza

    • Aug 20, 2014
  • This is how you roll

    Roll or stroll to the farmer's market; Oval Park Grille; mulberries and venison
    • Jun 11, 2014
  • Celebrating Jewish food

    Plus Los Comales and 118 Got Soul close, N.C. Food Inspector app and more
    • Jun 4, 2014
  • More »

More by Claire Cusick

  • Even a dentist could love Chapel Hill Toffee

    Chapel Hill Toffee has "the exactly right combination of the chocolate part and the toffee part." And the toffee part is crunchy but not hard; it won't threaten your dental work.
    • Dec 4, 2013
  • Matthew's, a chocolaterie on Churton Street

    Ask Matthew Shepherd how he came to own a jewel box chocolaterie in Hillsborough, and he will regale you with stories from a Missouri coal-mining town to trouble with the Canadian border patrol to ... wait, he was almost a professional bowler?
    • Dec 4, 2013
  • More »

Facebook Activity

Twitter Activity

Comments

The yeast doughnuts are to die for and the fresh baked bagel sandwiches are erfect. The lines might be long, …

by jkukelhan on Monuts Donuts (Durham County)

The burgers here are only okay and are overpriced. Frankly, Cookout is a better burger and a better deal.

by TruthNotLies on Bull City Burger & Brewery (Durham County)

Most Read

  1. Cheers at Dain Phelan's place (Having A Pint With)
  2. A biscuit bonanza (Now Serving)

© 2014 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation